The conservative donor network helmed by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch is back on air with new TV ads in Wisconsin and North Carolina.
 
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The Koch network is dropping $950,000 on a new TV ad in the Wisconsin Senate race, where Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonGOP senator: Congress needs ‘to move on’ from Russia probe GOP senator: ‘Way too early’ to talk about supporting Trump in 2020 IG report faults fired FBI official McCabe for leak to media MORE (R) trails Democrat Russ Feingold by 7 points. The Americans For Prosperity (AFP) ad, titled “Flood of Lies,” attacks Feingold for supporting ObamaCare. 
 
The ad, which is scheduled to run until Election Day, exploits the spike in ObamaCare premiums along with rising voter concerns about the efficacy of President Obama’s signature healthcare law. It complements AFP’s door-knocking and phone-canvassing efforts in Wisconsin.
 
The Koch network is also spending $500,000 on a new TV ad in the North Carolina gubernatorial race, according to Bill Riggs, a spokesman for the network’s top political super PAC, Freedom Partners Action Fund.
 
Titled “We can’t afford Roy Cooper,” the ad hits the Democratic gubernatorial candidate for backing government spending as a state legislator. Cooper leads Gov. Pat McCrory (R) by 3 points in a polling average. 
 
GOP officials have privately criticized the network in recent months. A number of Republicans are frustrated with the Kochs, believing they haven't put enough of their massive budget toward helping the party’s candidates in 2016.  
 
Most controversially, the Kochs decided they wouldn’t spend a penny of their $250 million political budget on GOP presidential nominee Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpFlynn to campaign for Montana GOP Senate candidate Trump considering pardon for boxing legend after call from Sylvester Stallone Decline in EPA enforcement won't keep climate bill from coming MORE. The network opposes Trump's populist views on trade and immigration and cannot abide much of his incendiary rhetoric. 
 
Network leaders invested earlier than other GOP outside groups in Senate races. They began spending in 2015 in an attempt to frame races around their issues. The Koch network has since dropped about $42 million on advertising to help Republicans in battleground-state races. 
 
The Kochs decided that for the final stretch to Election Day, they would largely withdraw from TV and focus on their ground game. Through their organizing groups, led by AFP, the Kochs have the biggest nationwide ground army in conservative politics — something akin to a privatized political party. This has pit the network, at times, against the official Republican Party, as policy goals don't always align. 
 
Even when they briefed reporters in September that they'd be going off air, Koch officials insisted they’d bolster their ground game with strategic ad buys in places they judged they could make a difference. They did so recently in Nevada’s closely fought Senate race, spending $750,000 on a TV ad hitting Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto.